FAQ's - answers to some of the most common lighting questions.

Why buy LEDs?

LEDs or light emitting diodes are highly energy efficient. They have a long life lasting up to 50 times longer than incandescent lamps and 2 to 5 times longer than fluorescent lamps. This makes them ideal for hard-to-access locations.

LEDs are durable and can withstand vibration and shocks. They are not affected by regular on-off switching, which is good for areas such as bathrooms. In addition, they are at full brightness as soon as they are switched on and many are fully dimmable.

How do LEDs work?

LEDs are a type of solid-state lighting (SSL).They are a type of semiconductor that causes electrons to release energy in the form of photons or light. The colour emitted depends on the materials used to make the LED. They can be red, yellow, blue, green or white.

The Lighting Council of Australia has identified the following as important terminology to understand in relationship to LEDs.

Lumens - A measure of light output. The higher the number, the more light is emitted. For an LED lamp to provide equivalent light to the common 50 Watt halogen downlight, it must produce a minimum light output of 480 lumens.

Energy efficiency - The energy efficiency of a light is measured in lumens per Watt (Lm/W). A good quality LED should emit at least 50 Lm/W.

Colour temperature - LEDs produce white light in a number of shades, just like fluorescent lamps. These range from warm white (similar to an incandescent lamp) to cool white or bluish white (daylight). Be sure to choose the colour you are most comfortable with.

Colour rendering index - The ability to render colour. Some LEDs lamps are better at helping the human eye see colours than others. Look for lamps that have a colour rendering index (CRI) of at least 80 for indoor use, or at least 65 for outdoor use.